Today, Indiana State Senator and Republican majority leader David Long issued a statement attempting to refute the rising chorus of Indiana voters asserting that he’s siding with the Obama administration by blocking a vote, discussion, or even a hearing on Senate Bill 230 (SB230).
Grassroots activists, however, were not impressed.
If passed, the act would nullify the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, and make it a felony to try to implement it in Indiana.
“A person who knowingly or intentionally implements or enforces a federal law, or attempts to implement or enforce a federal law, that is declared void under section 2 of this chapter commits a Class D felony.”
It also “finds that the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and the federal Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 are inconsistent with the power granted to the federal government in the Constitution of the United States.”
On Thursday, Long acknowledged that he has, in fact, placed a “hold” on the bill – preventing it from even being discussed in committee. In order to become law, the bill would first require a committee hearing and vote. Then, if passed, it would require a full debate on the floor of the State Senate, and a vote by the full Senate. Then, it would need to repeat the same process in the House.
While Long has claimed that he does “indentify with the spirit behind SB230,” he’s blocking it because he believes that “it is unconstitutional.”
“So what David Long is trying to tell the People of Indiana is this: individuals have the right to determine if something is Constitutional or not. But only David Long will make this decision in Indiana, and what the rest of the People there think means absolutely nothing to him,” Tenth Amendment Center executive director Michael Boldin said. “Long wants you to believe that Supreme Court decisions are not to be resisted by the States. He claims in his statement that last summer’s ruling puts an end to the issue, Obamacare is Constitutional. But, would David had said the same thing about the Dred Scott decision? The Supreme Court ruled that black people basically didn’t have rights.”
Long tacitly acknowledged the popularity of the bill, which already features 11 co-sponsors in the Indiana Senate. His greatest concern appears to be that the bill will actually pass and face a legal battle.
“Passage of SB 230 would only lead to Indiana becoming entangled in federal litigation that would cost significant taxpayer dollars and would quickly prove to be a waste of time,” Long wrote in an email sent to constituents.
“This is political fear-mongering at its best, or worst for that matter,” Boldin said. “What Long is doing is trying to scare people away from doing what they feel is right. In fact, he’s acting like the nanny big-government types that conservatives are supposed to be against. Long’s arrogance is beyond belief! It’s the same the kind of arrogance that Dianne Feinsten has shown in claiming that her gun bans will protect us from ourselves.”
Long did claim to offer a potential solution. He recommended that people assemble a constitutional convention under Article V of the Constitution – to amend it. But grassroots activists were given the impression that he was just “throwing them a bone” in response to the pressure he’s been getting for helping the Obama administration by blocking SB230.
“If Long believes our only solution is a con-con, then why in the heck did he not introduce the resolution before the heat got tuned up?” one grassroots activist said.
Another activist was clearly irritated that donors to Long over the last 8 years included significant heavyweights in the health and insurance industry.
“I saw that Long has received tens of thousands of dollars in contributions from pharmaceutical and health industry corporations over the years. Many of these, I believe could be benefiting directly from the government handouts that are included in Obamacare. I think it’s time to investigate this guy and see if there’s something shady going on behind the scenes!”
In his appeal for a constitutional amendment to stop Obamacare, Long cited James Madison for support. But, Tenth Amendment Center national communications director Mike Maharrey wasn’t impressed.
“Obviously Long doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Madison, along with Thomas Jefferson, were the first to propose the idea of a single state resisting an unconstitutional and dangerous federal act,” he said. “On top of it, there’s absolutely no chance that 3/4 of the country is going to agree on limiting the federal power and ending Obamacare. We can barely find 51 percent who agree on a single issue, much less 75 percent. Anyone proposing this as a solution knows it, and is just trying to distract people and create political cover for himself.”
In fact, in 1798 James Madison proposed exactly what Senator Long arrogantly opposes. In his Virginia Resolutions, Madison wrote that in order to “arrest the progress of evil,” the states were “duty bound, to interpose…within their respective limits.” In order word, Madison said that each state has a duty to stand between the federal government and the people who live there to protect the Constitution.
“Long doesn’t seem inclined to do his duty,” Maharrey said.
The Senator asserts he has to go along with Obamacare because, “the fact remains that the United States Supreme Court has upheld Obamacare as constitutional. This makes it the law of the land, for better or worse.”
But the man Long lauds as the “father of the Constitution” again stands at odds with the Senator. In his report of 1800, Madison insisted the Supreme Court could not, in the last resort, make the final decision on the extent of federal power.
“However true, therefore, it may be, that the judicial department, is, in all questions submitted to it by the forms of the Constitution, to decide in the last resort, this resort must necessarily be deemed the last in relation to the authorities of the other departments of the government; not in relation to the rights of the parties to the constitutional compact (the people of he states), from which the judicial as well as the other departments hold their delegated trusts. On any other hypothesis, the delegation of judicial power would annul the authority delegating it; and the concurrence of this department with the others in usurped powers, might subvert for ever, and beyond the possible reach of any rightful remedy, the very Constitution which all were instituted to preserve.”
“Long is apparently a big fan of elitist rulers lording over the rest of us. He thinks five federal employees should determine the amount of power their bosses get. And it looks like Long fancies himself one of these rulers too! He gets to decide what the representatives of the people of Indiana debate,” Maharrey said. “Let the Senate debate this. Determine if it is a good bill together, through the legislative process. Quit playing king!”